Argentina WSBK: Redding claims pole from Razgatlioglu
Scott Redding guided his Ducati to his first pole of the 2021 World Superbike season in Argentina, with title rivals Toprak Razgatlioglu second and Jonathan Rea fifth.
Having never ridden at the El Villicum circuit in San Juan, Redding showed no signs of struggling with a lack of track knowledge as he beat Razgatlioglu by 0.183s to score Ducati’s third-successive pole at the track.
Reigning world champion Rea set the initial benchmark at the start of the 15-minute Superpole session with a 1m38.092s on his Kawasaki.
But he was immediately beaten by chief title rival Razgatlioglu, the Yamaha rider edging ahead with a 1m37.979s before improving to a 1m37.800s.
While the track largely emptied, Ducati’s Scott Redding had stayed out and fired in a 1m37.617s to take over provisional pole from Razgatlioglu.
As it would turn out, no one would be able to mount a challenge on Redding’s pole on their second runs, leaving the Briton’s 1m37.817s intact to put him at the head of the field for Saturday’s opening race later today.
Razgatlioglu – who topped all three practices ahead of qualifying - leads Redding by 54 points at the top of the standings and will start race one alongside the Ducati rider having been unable to better his 1m37.800s from his first run.
Completing the front row for the first time in his career is Axel Bassani on the Motocorsa Ducati with a late effort of 1m37.838s, putting him ahead of Kawasaki’s Alex Lowes.
Having made a mistake on his penultimate flying lap into Turn 8 at the end of the back straight, Rea’s following effort was hampered by yellow flags for a crash at Turn 2 for MIE Honda’s Leandro Mercado.
This meant Rea could do no better than fifth on the grid between teammate Lowes and the second factory Yamaha of Andrea Locatelli.
Michael van der Mark was the leading BMW in seventh ahead of GRT Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff and the second factory Ducati of Michael Ruben Rinaldi, with Leon Haslam rounding out the top 10 on the Honda.
Eugene Laverty will start 12th on the second of the factory BMWs as he continues to deputise for the injured Tom Sykes, the Ulsterman pipping Chaz Davies on the Go Eleven Ducati in 13th.
A race winner in 2019 in Argentina, Alvaro Bautista struggled on his Honda to 15th behind Mercado, who held 14th despite his late crash.
|1||45|| Scott Redding ||Ducati||1'37.617|
|2||54|| Toprak Razgatlioglu ||Yamaha||1'37.800||0.183|
|3||47|| Axel Bassani ||Ducati||1'37.838||0.221|
|4||22|| Alex Lowes ||Kawasaki||1'38.034||0.417|
|5||1|| Jonathan Rea ||Kawasaki||1'38.092||0.475|
|6||55|| Andrea Locatelli ||Yamaha||1'38.221||0.604|
|7||60|| Michael van der Mark ||BMW||1'38.298||0.681|
|8||31|| Garrett Gerloff ||Yamaha||1'38.337||0.720|
|9||21|| Michael Ruben Rinaldi ||Ducati||1'38.342||0.725|
|10||91|| Leon Haslam ||Honda||1'38.456||0.839|
|11||32|| Isaac Viñales ||Kawasaki||1'38.506||0.889|
|12||50|| Eugene Laverty ||BMW||1'38.517||0.900|
|13||7|| Chaz Davies ||Ducati||1'38.592||0.975|
|14||36|| Leandro Mercado ||Honda||1'38.669||1.052|
|15||19|| Alvaro Bautista ||Honda||1'38.860||1.243|
|16||76|| Samuele Cavalieri ||Ducati||1'38.902||1.285|
|17||3|| Kohta Nozane ||Yamaha||1'39.328||1.711|
|18||53|| Tito Rabat ||Kawasaki||1'39.516||1.899|
|19||23|| Christophe Ponsson ||Yamaha||1'40.972||3.355|
|20||4|| Luciano Ribodino ||Kawasaki||1'41.915||4.298|
|21||39|| Marco Solorza ||Kawasaki||1'42.494||4.877|
|View full results|
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Argentina WSBK: Razgatlioglu scores dominant win, Redding crashes